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Department Chemie
Technische und Makromolekulare Chemie
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Guido Grundmeier
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Interfacial Engineering of Advanced Materials

The working group of “Interfacial and engineering of Advanced Materials” focuses on the fabrication and synthesis of oxidic, organic and nanocomposite thin films on engineering metals as well as on biomaterials. The aim is the deposition of thin films onto (bio)materials in order to improve their performance in terms of performance, durability and functionability.

Our research is focused on the following topics:

Corrosion of (bio)materials

Square etch development on MgO (100) substrates immersed in SBF electrolytes. (Giner. I et al, Corrosion Science, 2015)

The main scientific focus of this topic is to gain fundamental understanding of the surface and interface properties under various atmospheric conditions. One of our goal is the development and fabrication of atomically smooth metal and metal oxide thin films which may serve as model systems for the investigation at molecular level of the processes occurring at the oxide/metal interface. Thus, a broad selection of oxides films will be fabricated by means of PVD, ALD, PE-CVD and electrochemical deposition methods. The structural and chemical changes occurring at the interface in presence of water films or corrosive electrolytes are studied by means of state of the art spectroscopic and microscopic tools. 

Surface functionalization of bioceramics

Deposition of PE-CVD SiOx layers on ceramic substrates for improvement their biocompatibiltiy (Boke, F et al, ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, 2016)

High-strength ceramics such as alumina and zirconia are a versatile and reliable alternative especially for articulating components of artificial joints due to their high strength and wear resistance. When implanted into biological tissue, their chemical and biological inertness effectively hinders direct cell-attachment and causes the formation of fibrous tissue-encapsulation. To improve the interaction with biomolecules and cells, its surface has to be modified prior to use in biomedical applications. Therefore, we focus our research in the fabrication of a functional promoting interlayer to enhance the reactivity of the bioceramics. The new deposited layers will have to meet some requisites in terms of biocompatibility, cell-adhesion, toxicity, long-term stability. In collaboration with the Uniklinik RWTH Aachen we are developing new long-term stability and biocompatible functional coatings in order to enhance the durability and functionality of the bioceramics interface. 

Assembly of bioinspired nanomaterials into functional thin films

Self-assembly process driven by ultrasonic treatment

Bio-inspired nano-materials can be formed by the assembly of elementary building blocks using recognition modules and structural elements. Peptides are perhaps the most versatile building blocks of assembly of bio-inspired nanostructures due to their chemical diversity and their inherent to interact with biological systems. The short peptides monomers are organized by non-covalent interactions to form ordered supramolecular assemblies where the final properties can be fine-tuned by varying the chemical monomer nature or by modulating the assembly process. Depending on the deposition process, different nanostructures can be achieved ranging from nanotubes, nanospheres, nanoplatelets, nanorods, etc. Our research effort will be focused on the fabrication and characterization of different peptide supramolecular assemblies by means of novel experimental approaches including, solid-vapor deposition, low pressure plasma and ultrasonic assisted alignment methods. The final goal is to incorporate this supramolecular assemblies to 3D scaffolds for tissue 

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